Final Battle of the Ages
At face value, quite an ordinary term composed of two Hebrew nouns; one a thing, and the other a place. It is nothing more than a hill (Hebrew word Har) in a valley of Israel—Megiddo. Har Magedon … Armageddon.
Yet, such a powerful word picture that has captured the attention of people from every nation, race, and language … believers and unbelievers alike. So much so that many think of it exclusively as an event, with little thought to Armageddon as a place (in Israel). Or realize that more people on earth will have already died—from the man-made carnage of war and murder, and by God’s wrath poured out in the 6th & 7th seal, the seven trumpet, and seven bowl judgments– before Armageddon takes place!
What comes to mind when you think, hear, read, or say Armageddon?
Total Destruction? End of the Age? Apocalypse? World War III? Judgment Day?
Or: Final Battle of Good vs. Evil; God vs. Satan; Christ vs. Antichrist.
Books and articles have been written about Armageddon. Movies made of it. Sermons preached on it. Songs composed around it. Many people have used the term in normal conversation, particularly during World War I and even more so during World War II. And later during the perilous Cold War between the United States and Soviet Union, which on several occasions could have erupted in global conflict. Both World Wars were compared to or even considered to be Armageddon in the making. Especially WWII … exponentially more horrific than WWI (the War to End All Wars) with over four times the loss of life. Yet the death and destruction during the Great Tribulation will make WWII look like a skirmish with only a few casualties.
(See Eye of Prophecy article, Shocking Statistics of the Great Tribulation, posted 6-6-15).
Many people equate Armageddon to the entire Tribulation period. In this week’s article, you’ll see that it actually occurs in a 30-day period as and after the full seven years of the Tribulation ends. It is not the war (or wars) fought between nations that are depicted primarily in the first four Seal judgments, commonly called the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse. Rather, it is the final battle between Messiah and the (surviving) nations and kings on earth, led by Antichrist.
Just before Armageddon, the ten-nation confederation of Antichrist Nero will be opposed by the Kings of the East (China and most likely Japan, North Korea, Indonesia). Over 500 hundred years before the book of Revelation was written, the prophet Daniel was the first to mention this imposing threat to Antichrist.
Antichrist—who is Nero, as extensively documented in my book Out of the Abyss and several Eye of Prophecy articles in the category of Antichrist—will be powerful, but not a world dictator. He will be opposed by several nations and leaders on earth who have not yielded to him.
As depicted in Scripture, they are the:
King of the South & Kings of the East
“Then at the time of the end, the king of the south will attack the king of the north (Antichrist). The king of the north will storm out with chariots, charioteers, and a vast navy. He will invade various lands and sweep through them like a flood. He will enter the glorious land of Israel, and many nations will fall, but Moab, Edom, and the best part of Ammon will escape. He will conquer many countries, and even Egypt will not escape. He will gain control over the gold, silver, and treasures of Egypt, and the Libyans and Ethiopians will be his servants.
“But then news from the east and the north will alarm him, and he will set out in great anger to destroy and obliterate many. He will stop between the glorious holy mountain and the sea (valley of Megiddo) and will pitch his royal tents. But while he is there, his time will suddenly run out, and no one will help him” (Daniel 11:40-45, parenthesis mine).
Because the North African nations of Egypt, Libya, and Ethiopia are specifically named in this passage, it’s evident that they (and other African and Mid-east nations) will combine their forces to attack Antichrist and his coalition. The gist of this passage also conveys the idea that this “king of the south” will attack just a portion of Antichrist’s armies stationed in the area of the Mediterranean Sea. With the hope that the kings of the East (who undoubtedly have already threatened the ten-nation confederation of Antichrist) will join them.
But their attack is premature. The Asian kings (nations) don’t come to the aid of this southern alliance in time. Antichrist (king of the north) will respond by mobilizing his entire military including a “vast navy” and will crush the king of the south. During this campaign, Antichrist will prepare to launch an assault on Israel … “enter the glorious land”. Although the African nations will be defeated, Antichrist will not be completely victorious over Moab, Edom, and Ammon—parts of modern-day Jordan, Syria, Iraq, and Saudi Arabia.
Just as Antichrist is celebrating this triumph over the audacious king of the south, news from the north and east will enrage him. How dare the kings of the east (Revelation 16) march on him?
This military opposition combined with the last three trumpet judgments (the trilogy of terrors) and the first five bowl judgments (directly exclusively at Antichrist and those who have taken his mark) will both alarm and infuriate Satan, Antichrist, and the False Prophet. To the extent that Satan’s demonic powers will be unleashed to form an alliance with the powerful nations of the East for the express purpose of making war on Messiah Jesus himself.
This massive military in the valley of Megiddo will undoubtedly be the largest ever assembled in all of history.
(A Portion of the Valley of Megiddo, Which is Part of the Jezreel Plain of Israel. I’ve Been There! Using Conservative Figures of Just the Main Expanse of Megiddo, It Is Some 280 Square Miles … Enough to Accommodate Millions of Soldiers Plus Armaments)
In fact: with the sixth bowl judgment God supernaturally drains the great Euphrates River to accommodate these eastern armies’ march against Nero and his ten-nation confederation. This is similar to the Gog/Magog attack on Israel early in the Tribulation period (primarily by Russia, Iran, and Turkey … see Ezekiel 38 & 39). God himself entices Gog/Magog to do what they had wanted to do for a long time—invade Israel. In order for God to display his mighty sovereign power over Israel’s enemies. “…Then all the nations will know that I am the Lord” (Ezekiel 38:16).
*Note: Although Ethiopia and Libya will be part of the Magog confederacy, it will be their armies which are supernaturally (with Israel not needing to fight at all) crushed by God. The civilians and soldiers left behind to guard their countries will be overrun by Antichrist later in the Tribulation (Daniel 11). He will gain complete control of their governments and economy (gold and silver).
The sixth bowl:
“Then the sixth angel poured out his bowl on the great Euphrates River, and it dried up so that the kings from the east could march their armies toward the west without hindrance. And I saw three evil spirits that looked like frogs leap from the mouths of the dragon (Satan), the beast (Antichrist Nero), and the false prophet. They are demonic spirits who work miracles and go out to all the rulers of the world to gather them for battle against the Lord on that great judgment day of God the Almighty…
“And the demonic spirits gathered all the rulers and their armies to a place with the Hebrew name Armageddon” (Revelation 16:10-14 & 16, parenthesis mine, italics in the text which is the English transliteration for Harmagedon).
This is a startling shift in the strategy of Satan, Antichrist, and the False Prophet; born out of increasing concern (bordering on fear) for two reasons: (1) the mounting challenge by primarily the kings of the east to Antichrist’s power base. (2) The increasingly severe and intolerable supernatural plagues of God’s bowl judgments directed specifically at Antichrist and his followers. By this time Nero will know beyond all doubt that Messiah Jesus would be soon returning, as the other end-time’s prophecies recorded in Scripture were being fulfilled before his very eyes.
Here is the fifth bowl judgment immediately preceding the drying up of the mighty Euphrates River which brings Satan, Nero, and their false prophet to the point where they’ve (almost) had enough; but not enough for their followers to repent, which is the main purpose for God’s Tribulation judgments.
Drastic action is required. Thus, this unholy trinity summons all the demonic powers of Satan and the underworld needed to turn the tide—beguiling the massive armies of the kings of the east to join forces with them. As we shall soon see, the kings of the east oblige Satan and Nero but not until Messiah actually returns to the earth.
The Progression of Events Leading to Armageddon … Beginning Half-Way Through the Tribulation
We’re going to examine that I believe is a Biblically sound scenario including passages quoted above, to show the startling sequence of events preceding Armageddon. To even demonstrate that the battle of Armageddon itself will take place AFTER the 42 month period of power and authority (1,260 days) given to Antichrist, which is the additional 30 days mentioned in the following passage:
“From the time the daily sacrifice is stopped and the sacrilegious object that causes desecration is set up to be worshipped, there will be 1,290 days” (Daniel 12:11).
Another way to read this verse: There will be 1,290 days between the time the daily sacrifice is stopped and the sacrilegious object is set up.
Which is contrary to the prevailing view that the object is erected when the treaty is broken … at the half way point of the seven-year Tribulation. Instead, Nero will profane the Temple just a very short time before he is defeated by Christ at Armageddon.
Right after Satan’s (and his demons) unearthly merging of Antichrist’s coalition with the mighty armies of the Asian countries, the 7th bowl is poured out by God’s angel. In terms of global destruction, it is the most powerful of all of God’s judgments. Later in today’s article we’ll look at the full scope of that enormous event. For now and for purpose of demonstrating that the actual seven years of the Great Tribulation will end (prior to the 30 day-period of time in which Christ will route Antichrist and his expanded confederacy in the valley of Megiddo), only the first verse of that final judgment will be quoted:
“Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air. And a mighty shout came from the throne in the Temple, saying, ‘It is finished!’” (Revelation 16:17).
What is finished? Answer: God’s specific judgments on “those who belong to this world” (Revelation 17:8). The only thing left is Armageddon itself.
(Jesus First Spoke These Words As He Was Dying on the Cross as The Lamb of God To Take Away the Sins of the World. The Second Time is When He Returns as the Lion from the Tribe of Judah!)
Now let’s look at the amazing events preceding and including Armageddon. One of which will result in a surprising premise that Messiah’s Second Coming (physical touch down on earth) will actually be in two phases, separated by no more than a few weeks (probably days) in duration.
In order of occurrence:
(1) Antichrist Nero breaks the seven-year treaty with Israel
“The ruler will make a treaty with the people for a period of one set of seven, but after half this time, he will put an end to the sacrifices and offerings…” (Daniel 9:27). We’ve already discussed some of the features of this event.
(2) The broken treaty will precipitate Satanic vengeance against the Jews and intensify persecution of tribulation saints (Jewish and Gentile Christians)
“When the dragon realized that he had been thrown down to the earth, he pursued the woman (Israel) who had given birth to the male child (Messiah Jesus). But she (Israel) was given two wings like those of great eagle (most likely aircraft) so she could fly to the place prepared for her in the wilderness (perhaps Petra). There she would be cared for and protected from the dragon for a time, times, and half a time (3 ½ years or forty-two months or 1,260 days).
“…And the dragon was angry at the woman and declared war against the rest of her children—all who keep God’s commandments and maintain their testimony for Jesus” (Revelation 12:13-15 & 17, parenthesis mine).
(3) God’s Protection
As we just read, those Jews in Israel and other parts of the world who agree to flee their homes will be safe throughout the Tribulation in the place (wilderness) that God has prepared for them. But many Jews will remain in Israel or wherever they reside on earth with the misguided notion that their allegiance to Antichrist, voluntary or forced, will protect them. At first, it will, because Antichrist will let loose his evil agenda primarily on the Tribulation Saints. He will also enhance the consolidation of his power during the last half of the Tribulation. To include economic control of (buying and selling goods) people from many nations and languages willing to take his mark in their forehead or right hand.
This, however, will NOT be a One-World Government; rather it will be a corrupt counterpart to and counterfeit of the true Messiah Jesus; whose followers were from every nation, race, and language but without a centralized global government … until Jesus sets up the Kingdom of God during the Millennium. Governments of many nations will oppose Antichrist. If just one nation (as a whole) does not submit, then there can’t be a One-World Government. In fact, Antichrist’s coalition may not even be as formidable as the kings of the East.
For example: China has already risen to the status of a world-power (behind only the United States) ahead even of Russia and European powers like France, Germany and Great Britain—none of which currently possesses a powerful military that they formerly had. And China will not be the only nation that comprise the “Kings of the East.” (See Eye of Prophecy article, A Sleeping Giant, posted 2-14-15).
(China’s Standing Army–3.7 million; Reserves–1.5 million; Available Manpower-750 million!)
(4) The King of the South will march on Antichrist
This will most likely begin in the last few months of the Tribulation. With the rationale that it leads directly (in an implied fairly short period of time) to the kings of the East marching against Nero with their realization that he has global ambitions and could soon control the entire Middle East.
(5) Antichrist’s Coalition routs the Southern Alliance
While Antichrist is in the vicinity, he will “enter the glorious land of Israel.”
We’ve also covered that in Daniel Chapter 11.
(6) Invasion of the Kings of the East
From the Far East, across a dry Euphrates River, all the way to Israel … probably in the last 4-6 weeks of the final 1,260 days of the Tribulation. This is where Zechariah Chapters 12 & 14 come into the picture. Which is:
(7) Messiah Jesus will return to the earth!
The immediate catalyst for Messiah’s return will be the Antichrist’s attack on Jerusalem, which will most likely begin in the final 3-4 weeks of the Great Tribulation.
Here’s what will happen:
“Watch, for the day of the Lord is coming when your possessions will be plundered right in front of you! I will gather all the nations to fight against Jerusalem. The city will be taken, the houses looted, and the woman raped. Half the population will be taken into captivity, and the rest will be left among the ruins of the city” (Zechariah 14:1-2). *Note: These are the remaining Israelis; the others have escaped to the wilderness out of harm’s way at the mid-point of the Tribulation.
Continuing with Zechariah 14: “Then the Lord will go out to fight against those nations, as he has fought in times past. On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, east of Jerusalem. And the Mount of Olives will split apart, making a wide valley running from east to west … You will flee through this valley…” (Zechariah 14:3-5).
Based on Zechariah 14, nearly all Bible scholars and students (including me), even non-Messianic Jews, correctly believe that Messiah will arrive on earth by first stepping foot on the Mount of Olives. With, of course, believers in Christ proclaiming this to be the return of Messiah (Second Coming) and non-Messianic Jews believing this will be Messiah’s initial arrival.
At this juncture, I’m going to propose something I haven’t mentioned in any Eye of Prophecy article until now. Why? Because it was only during this week’s article that the Lord gave me this insight! This premise leads to a more complete, clarified, and sequentially accurate scenario. In bold print for emphasis it is:
Christ’s Second Coming to earth will happen twice … on two separate occasions!
First, he will arrive on the Mount of Olives as we just read in Zechariah. Then (a few days later) he will descend again from heaven on a white horse, but this time with the host of heaven (Raptured believers) as we will soon read in Revelation Chapter 19.
(8) Messiah’s first phase (of his Second Coming) on the Mount of Olives
That’s when the Jews will mourn for him, in solemn remorse that they hadn’t recognized nor accepted him as their Messiah. Then to rejoice that he has come to rescue them.
With evidence in that same chapter of Zechariah that Messiah will require his people to fight furiously for their very survival. At that time he will help them, but only up to a point. They must first relive the experience that their ancestors had in Joshua’s time and in King David’s time—the necessity to fight for the precious Promised Land of Israel.
God fought for and with them during those series of victories over the Canaanites, then Philistines and other enemies. But the Israelites still suffered casualties—the price necessary for national sovereignty and freedom to worship the Lord. It was a lesson to completely rely on (trust and obey) the Lord their God for victory, while doing their part to courageously fight in order to fully acquire and appreciate what God had prepared for them. There were only a handful of occasions throughout Israel’s history where God supernaturally intervened unilaterally for his chosen people, without Israel lifting a finger. (See Eye of Prophecy article: Stand Still & Watch God Fight For Israel! Posted 7-30-16).
Which is why Zachariah states: “Then the Lord will go out to fight against those nations, as he has fought in times past.”
First, he will stand beside them after stepping foot on the Mount of Olives. Yet his people must also fight, just like they did in Old Testament times. At that point, I believe that Christ will be with his people mostly for motivation and inspiration. Just to know that he’s there, will give the Jewish soldiers and civilians extraordinary strength, skill, and courage in battle. However, when Nero joins forces with the kings of the East, Jesus will return a second time with the host of heaven. This time he will rescue the Jews from potential annihilation by himself.
When Jesus descends to the Mount of Olives we read: “On that day the Lord will defend the people of Jerusalem; the weakest among them will be as mighty as King David! And the royal descendants will be like God, like the angel of the Lord who goes before them!” (Zechariah 12:8).
Do you see what’s happening? The Lord will “defend” his people, but the Jews must fight alongside of him. And, oh will they fight. Even the weakest among them will be valiant warriors like King David! But that victory won’t be won the instant that Christ steps foot on the Mount of Olives.
To further confirm that complete conquest will not yet be achieved immediately after Christ arrives on the Mount of Olives, let’s read the very next verse: “For on that day I will begin to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem” (Zechariah 12:9, italics for emphasis). The text is as plain as it can be: This is only the beginning. However, it is the beginning of the end.
Now let’s return to Zechariah Chapter 14 to further validate the premise that Christ’s Second Coming will begin on the Mount of Olives, but there will be another arrival soon afterward—in the final 30 days of the 1,290 days (Daniel 12).
We’ve examined the verses that tell us Messiah will (first) step-foot on the Mount of Olives to defend his people, and begin to destroy their enemies. After that we read: “…Then the Lord my God will come, and all his holy ones with him” (Zechariah 14:5b, italics for emphasis). I’m sure you caught the significance of the word, then. It means just what it says: later … in this case not much later. But this time (then) the Lord will come with all “his holy ones.”
Exactly when (what event) is then? Before we get to then, we need to look at the next major occurrence in this sequence of events leading to the final battle of the ages … Armageddon.
(9) China and other Far-East nations will align with Antichrist Nero
Jesus temporarily leaves the (his) defense of Jerusalem in order to prepare for the FINAL victory over this colossal military coalition, now united together at Har Magedon (Armageddon).
Soon after Antichrist joins forces with the kings of the East, the final bowl judgment strikes. It is unfathomably catastrophic in scope. In fact, immediately after we read that the “demonic spirits gathered all the rulers and their armies to … Armageddon” (Revelation 16:16), this final judgment is described in verses 17-21. Here, I will defer to Eye of Prophecy article, Shocking Statistics of the Great Tribulation for both the passage itself and commentary on it (in italics):
Although all of the apocalyptic events allowed or caused by God are exceptional, none more so than the final earth-shattering demonstration of God’s power. Every time I read it, I shake my head in disbelief. I repeat the words, but they still do not compute. My imagination lags far behind the stunning reality of it all. A comparative image comes to mind; however, I realize that it is a fully inadequate analogy. I’ll mention it anyway—in order to gain a partial perspective and picture of how the final bowl judgment of God will surpass of all the catastrophes preceding it. The imagery that comes to mind is that of a lengthy fire-works display that culminates in the greatest, most magnificent grand finale ever seen. But the resemblance is similar only in form, certainly not in substance. Here is God’s final Tribulation judgment:
“Then the seventh angel poured out his bowl into the air. And a mighty shout came from the throne in the Temple saying, ‘It is finished!’ Then the thunder crashed and rolled, and lightning flashed. And a great earthquake struck—the worst since people were placed on the earth. The great city of Babylon (Rome) split into three sections, and the cities of many nations fell into heaps of rubble … And every island disappeared, and all the mountains were leveled. There was a terrible hailstorm, and hailstones weighing seventy-five pounds fell from the sky onto the people below. They cursed God because of the terrible plague of the hailstorm” (Revelation 16:17-21).
Once again, absolutely incredible! Not just cities all over the earth crumbling into rubble, or every single island—think of the Hawaiian Islands—completely disappearing (giant tsunamis that not only inundate but sink the islands), and all of the earth’s mountains flattened into level plains. No, that isn’t what causes the unrepentant who are left on the earth to curse God once again. It was the giant hailstones that obviously were even more devastating than the other colossal calamities. The disaster depicted in the recently released movie, San Andreas, is nothing more than a tiny dot on a Seismograph compared to this unbelievably powerful world-wide earthquake, its aftermath, and the hailstorm to follow in this final and most fearsome judgment of all.
Notice that the passage says “cities of many nations.” But not all nations. Thus, not all major cities will be destroyed. Rome (encoded as Babylon in the above verses) will be devastated, as graphically portrayed in the entire 18th chapter of Revelation.
However, Jerusalem will be spared. In fact, Jerusalem will have already experienced an earthquake earlier in the Tribulation as described in Revelation Chapter 11. Please see Eye of Prophecy article, Major Earthquake in Israel … When & Where It Will Strike, published 11-25-17.
(10) The Grand Finale
Zechariah 14:5 tells us that: “…Then (later, sometime after Jesus steps foot on the Mount of Olives) the Lord my God will come, and all his holy ones with him.”
This matches perfectly with what we’re about to read in Revelation 19, which clearly shows that the holy ones are the “armies of heaven” on white horses who will accompany Messiah in his final victory over Antichrist. Whereas, Zechariah Chapter 12 explains that it is the Israelis who will be fighting alongside Messiah.
With the clear implication and deduction that the “holy ones” (believers taken in the Rapture, seven years earlier) with Jesus were not with him when he first returns to Israel on the Mount of Olives.
That and the stated fact in Zechariah 12:9: “For on that day I will begin to destroy all the nations that come against Jerusalem.” The final victory isn’t won during Messiah’s initial (first phase) return to the Mount of Olives. Plus, there’s no indication in Zechariah that Messiah arrives on the Mount of Olives on a white horse. For that matter (as a reminder) Scripture tells us exactly how Jesus will return to the Mount of Olives from whence he departed after his amazing resurrection.
The angels said to the disciples: “Men of Galilee … Jesus has been taken from you into heaven, but someday he will return from heaven in the same way you saw him go!” (Acts 1:11).
Did Jesus leave the Mount of Olives on a white horse? Easy answer: No, he did not. If he is to return in the same manner (and he will) to the Mount of Olives, then it must be on foot. “On that day his feet will stand on the Mount of Olives east of Jerusalem…” (Zechariah 14:4).
For me, this revised understanding of Christ’s return to earth in two phases is a much better fit of all of the passages and the sequence of events leading to Armageddon.
First: to the Mount of Olives to, alongside the Jews, begin the fight against Antichrist in Israel and Jerusalem. Second: a subsequent return to completely vanquish Satan, Antichrist, the False Prophet, and their massive military in the valley of Megiddo (Armageddon).
With a literary drum roll, here is the awesome grand finale:
“Then I saw heaven opened, and a white horse was standing there. Its rider was named Faithful and True, for he judges fairly and wages a righteous war. His eyes were like flames of fire, and on his head were many crowns. A name was written on him that no one understood except himself. He wore a robe dipped in blood, and his title was the Word of God. The armies of heaven, dressed in the finest of pure white linen, followed him on white horses. From his mouth came a sharp sword to strike down the nations … On his robe at his thigh was written this title: King of all kings and Lord of all lords.
“…Then I saw the beast and the kings of the world and their armies gathered together to fight against the one sitting on the horse and his army. And the beast was captured, and with him the false prophet who did mighty miracles on behalf of the beast—miracles that deceived all who had accepted the mark of the beast and worshipped his statue. Both the beast and the false prophet were thrown alive into the fiery lake of burning sulfur. Their entire army was killed by the sharp sword that came from the mouth of the one riding the white horse. And the vultures all gorged themselves on the dead bodies” (Revelation 19:11-16 & 19-21).
Such a swift, anticlimactic end of the battle for Jerusalem that we read about in Zechariah and as alluded to in Daniel 11. The Antichrist and the False Prophet are (simply) captured. But it’s evident that their armies decided they could still defeat Messiah because they continued the battle.
We know that because it was necessary for Christ to kill this “entire army.” And he does so by the power of his Word—merely speaking the judgment!
Back to Zachariah for more graphic details of what will happen at Armageddon:
“And the Lord will send a plague on all the nations that fought against Jerusalem. Their people will become like walking corpses, their flesh rotting away. Their eyes will rot in their sockets, and their tongues will rot in their mouths. On that day they will be terrified, stricken by the Lord with great panic … Judah, too, will be fighting at Jerusalem…” (Zechariah 14:12-14).
*Note: The battle for Jerusalem will continue (on a smaller scale) during Armageddon as Antichrist will undoubtedly leave part of his armies to continue the fight there. If you’ve reached the conclusion that the description of how these armies will die matches that of nuclear explosions, then I believe you are correct. The Lord will unleash the power of the atom, by merely commanding it to happen. And he won’t need enriched uranium or plutonium. There will be no radioactive fallout!
In Revelation Chapter 14 (one of the parenthetical portions in the book—an interlude between the chronological unfolding of events—we read another passage that vividly depicts what will take place during Armageddon with an analogy to the pressing of grapes:
“The grapes were trampled in the winepress outside the city, and blood flowed from the winepress in a stream about 180 miles long and as high as a horse’s bridle” (Revelation 14:20).
Things to Ponder
God’s predictions through his prophets always come to pass. What he says will happen always happens. Not to say that we know beyond doubt in what sequence ALL end-times prophecies will unfold. Many we know, such as the chronological progression of the seven seal, trumpet, and bowl judgments. However, by comparing and correlating the Tribulation prophecies (Daniel 7, 9, 11, 12; Matthew 24; II Thessalonians 2; Zechariah 12 & 14; Revelation 4-19), we can be confident of the sequence identified in the ten points listed earlier. And concerning Messiah’s physical return to earth, I’m now convinced that it will take place in two phases.
The FACT that all of these things will take place is ultimately the most important thing to grasp. Although the sequence of events leading to Armageddon should be understood as accurately as possible, it’s not absolutely imperative that we know precisely in what order they will unfold. Nonetheless, the more (accurately) we comprehend, the more we can marvel at the astounding features of Bible prophecies that have shaped and will determine mankind’s destiny.
This includes Messiah Jesus’s physical return to earth. However, his physical return is not the Rapture, which is the event that triggers the reappearance of Antichrist Nero and the seven-year Tribulation. See Eye of Prophecy article, Messiah’s Return & The Rapture (Same or Different Events?) Posted 12-3-16.
As indicated, the prevalent view (including mine until now) is that Messiah returns to earth as conveyed in Revelation 19—on a white horse with the host of heaven, which incorporates stepping foot on the Mount of Olives. That of somehow combining the two into one. But as examined in today’s article, Revelation 19 doesn’t fit with Zechariah 12 & 14 by merging the two together.
Instead, we now have a more feasible (better) scenario to consider: Jesus returns by first arriving on the Mount of Olives, to begin the defense of Jerusalem. Then returns again from heaven to win the final victory, alongside of Raptured believers—Jew and Gentile alike.
(Photo Taken From Mount of Olives, Overlooking the Eastern Gate, Temple Mount, and Much of Jerusalem. I’ve Been There, Too!)
Another reason for this two-part return, beginning on the Mount of Olives: When the Lord touches the Mount of Olives it splits in half, with some Jews escaping (through a valley created) the onslaught of Antichrist in Jerusalem. As opposed to Messiah’s triumphant descent on a white horse (Rev. 19) where there will be no need for the Israelis to escape in that manner. At that point, Antichrist and his hordes will give their undivided attention to Messiah and it will be from the valley of Megiddo (Armageddon), not from Jerusalem.
Messiah’s triumphant descent from heaven on a white horse obviously results in the FINAL VICTORY over Satan, Antichrist, the False Prophet, and their armies; AFTER he begins to defend Israel in Jerusalem.
And believers will have the awesome privilege to ride to final victory with our Lord when he defeats evil, and makes all things right in this wicked wrongful world we live in.
We love you Lord because you first loved us!
Come quickly Messiah Jesus, and put an end to the ugliness of sin and evil.
Establish your Kingdom of righteousness, justice, and peace.
All praise to the Living Word of God, The Lion of Judah!